Former manager and label boss Brandon “Randy” Phillips has been tapped chief executive of AEG Live, the newly formed live-music promotion unit of Los Angeles-based live-event giant Anschutz Entertainment Group.
Phillips, who reports to AEG prexy and chief exec Timothy Leiweke, will handle all the day-to-day operations and strategic planning at the new group. AEG Live will serve as the umbrella entity for AEG’s flagship promoter Concerts West (now renamed AEG Concerts), as well as the company’s ambitious new Las Vegas production showcasing Canadian diva Celine Dion.
Also under the aegis of AEG Live will be Goldenvoice, a smaller promoter specializing in alternative acts such as Bjork and Weezer, and Spring Communications, which packages live events specifically for the pay-per-view market.
Exec takes the reins at AEG as it faces increasingly stiff competition from Clear Channel Entertainment, the 800-pound gorilla in the concert promotion field. But while Clear Channel tries to snare blockbuster acts for all-in-one tour packages in its national network of venues, AEG can carve out a lucrative market focusing on more localized promotion and more hands-on service, Phillips said.
“We want to try to devolve to the pre-Sillerman days, where we had a regional approach to touring, not this national cookie-cutter approach,” Phillips said, referring to legendary touring-business consolidator Robert Sillerman. “Where there’s a vacuum, things move in to fill it.”
Phillips’ resume cuts a wide swath across the music biz. Exec got his start producing TV show “The Rock Palace” for NBC. He later moved into management as half of Stiefel-Phillips Entertainment, handling such acts as Guns N’ Roses and Prince.
Phillips later headed up Gasoline Alley, a joint-venture label with MCA Records best known for signing ska-punk act Sublime, then indie Red Ant Entertainment. Just before climbing aboard at AEG, he ran Phillips Digital Media, a management/consulting firm.